Growth hormone concentrations in mammary secretions and plasma of the periparturient bitch and in plasma of the neonate

I. Schoenmakers, H. S. Kooistra, A. C. Okkens, H. A. W. Hazewinkel, M. M. Bevers, J. A. Mol

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The presence of growth hormone (GH) in mammary secretions of bitches was investigated in relation to plasma GH concentrations at about the time of parturition and during the first weeks of lactation. Plasma GH concentrations in neonates were measured during the first weeks of lactation, to determine whether GH in maternal milk contributes to plasma concentrations of GH in the neonate. Gastrointestinal uptake of GH was studied by measurement of plasma bovine GH (bGH) concentrations after intragastric administration of bGH. High concentrations of GH were found in the mammary secretions of the bitches, particularly before parturition and in colostrum, exceeding maternal plasma concentration up to 100-1000 times. GH concentrations in milk were not not significantly correlated with GH concentrations in plasma of bitches or neonates. Bovine GH could not be detected in neonatal plasma for 4 h after intragastric administration of bGH. The presence of high concentrations of canine GH (cGH) in ante-partum and colostral mammary secretions is consistent with the progesterone-induced mammary biosynthesis of GH. GH in milk is probably not absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract into the blood circulation of the newborn in its intact form.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)363-367
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Reproduction and Fertility
Issue numberSupplement
Publication statusPublished - 1997

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